i wish i could keep talking to these friends. i thank steve, frank, elise, margay and john. "mtp daily" starts right now with the fabulous katy tur in for chuck. >> not for a long shot. nicolle wallace, thank you very much. if it's monday, it's a perfect legal storm for the white house. tonight, from the page fisa release to manafort in courts and the cohen tape. we're tracking the growing legal fallout for the president's inner circle. plus, all caps locked and loaded. what's behind the president's new war of words with iran? >> the president's been, i think, pretty strong since day one in his language towards iran. >> and pole vault. while the president's popularity
with his base is at a record high, there is new evidence of a blue wave building. this is "mtp daily" and it starts right now. good evening, i'm katy tur in new york in for chuck todd. welcome to "mtp daily." we begin tonight with all the president's men. clearly fueling all the president's tweets and all the president's threats. the latest being a threat to revoke the security clearances of his political rivals. this comes as three key members of the trump team, his campaign chief, his personal attorney and his campaign's foreign policy advisor are at the center of a dizzying series of traumatic legal developments and revelations connected to the russia investigation. in response, the president is lashing out at mueller, the fbi, the media, federal judges, the
justice department, president obama, hillary clinton, the dnc, and his political enemies, just to name a few. the president's tweet storms and threats have even gotten some folks speculating that he is spoiling for a war with iran just to change the subject. so let's dive into the big news that seems to be fueling the president's attacks. for the first time, the fbi has made public the highly, read highly secretive court documents that authorize the fbi's surveillance of trump campaign advisor carter page. justice department officials in both the obama and trump administration believed page was, quote, collaborating and conspiring with the russian government and that he perhaps and other trump campaign members were coordinating with the russians during the campaign. page has not been charged with a crime. he denies the allegations. so does the president. these surveillance applications
were authorized and reauthorized by these four judges on the secret fisa court. all of them were appointed by republican presidents. the president's own deputy attorney general rod rosenstein signed off on their reauthorization too. but here's the president's rather predictable response to that news this afternoon, care of the white house press secretary. >> he sees more and more every single day that this is proving further and further to be a total witch hunt, particularly because it was based on a false and unverified and discredited dossier. >> but wait, there's more. the president also appears to be reeling from the recent revelations that his long-time personal attorney, michael cohen, secretly recorded him during the campaign. today a court-appointed reviewer of mefaterials seized by the fb said that 12 audio tapes have been released to federal
prosecutors. it's unclear how many of those involve the president. but wait, there's more. because the public is poised to see prosecutors unveil the dirt they have on the president's campaign chief, paul manafort, a federal judge ruled that manafort's court would begin on july 31st, that is next week. we've also learned the names of five witnesses that were given immunity to testify against him. manafort has pleaded not guilty, but he faces an array of financial crimes that could put him in jail for decades. that is if he doesn't cut a deal to cooperate with mueller's team. we've got a lot to dive into. ken dilanian is an nbc news intelligence and national security reporter. he joins our panel. nick confessore is a "new york times" reporter and msnbc political analyst. zerlina maxwell, a former clinton campaign advisor and an msnbc political analyst. and noah rothman is the associate editor at "commentary" magazine.
we'll talk about the spin and the reaction in a moment, but i do want to drill down on the evidence that we have here and what we got from this fisa document over the weekend. a lot of it was heavily redacted but here is what we do know. page has been the subject of targeted recruitment by the russian government. the fbi believes that page has been collaborating and conspiring with the russian government. the fbi believes that the russian government's efforts are being coordinated with page and perhaps other individuals associated with trump's campaign. ken, as i just laid out, these applications were approved under both obama administration -- the obama administration and the trump administration by judges appointed by republicans. >> that's right, katy. and before that happened, they went through multiple layers of review within the fbi and then were sent over to the justice department where lawyers took another look at them. look, this is a rigorous process. the process to obtain a secret fisa warrant against a u.s. citizen. it's not a joke.
nobody fools around with it. you risk your career if you misrepresent things to the fisa court. what we see with those documents is that there are reams and reams of redacted pages that people like adam schiff say include all sorts of evidence unrelated to this christopher steele dossier that gave the fbi and judges probable cause that carter page was the agent of a foreign power. this is not a high standard, this is not beyond a reasonable doubt, this is a probability of a possibility. enough evidence to believe that they should investigate whether he is an agent of a foreign power. we should add, he hasn't been charged with a crime and he denies he was an agent of russia. >> the fbi believes the russian government's efforts are being coordinated with page and perhaps other individuals associated with the trump campaign. that alone is something that i imagine anybody, regardless of whether it helps you or hurts you, would want to get to the bottom of. that's a pretty big accusation
or pretty big concern at the very least. >> on top of that, carter page has said on cnn that it was he was a formal advisor to the kremlin. i'm not sure how many more layers of evidence we need. i do think it's important to pull back here for a second. the entire koucounterattack is based on the idea because the dossier came from somebody who was trying to discredit trump, the entire investigation is discredited. when you think about how thin a read that is, right, it's -- so the dossier is one piece of evidence that went to an applicable for probable cause this guy might be worth surveilling, that's it. and it's actually well supported. >> but carter page wasn't surveilled until october. the investigation started in the spring. it started because another campaign foreign policy advisor was bragging to an australian diplomat about the russians having dirt on hillary clinton. this is not even -- if you want to pan the dossier, fine, but
this is not how the investigation started. >> for me the statement of offense came out for george papadopoulos, a name many of us were like who is that? the day that that happened, the day that happened is the day that argument stopped having merit, because that statement of the offense articulated the exact timing through between the fisa warrant was approved and what triggered the start of the investigation. as nick said, that was him drunk in a bar talking to an australian diplomat. so for now we're all serious at this table. some arguments have merit and there's evidence to back them up, but i think that what we learned this weekend is devin nunes has been lying this entire time and the entire memo they put out is in bad faith. >> it's not just devin nunes, but it's the president. i'm going to ask this and you're going to laugh at me. do facts matter with the president? why did the fbi tell the fisa court steele's work was potentially biased because it was commissioned to be used
defense trump -- these are not the trump tweets. the department of justice and the fbi misled the courts. the whole fisa scam led to the rigged mueller wnitch hunt. but that's not what happened. we just pointed that out, noah. >> i saw a tweet from representative jim jordan today who said sort of backing up the nunes memo that essentially this was a product of an effort to mislead the fisa courts because they never informed the fisa courts about the bias inherent in this dossier. and it's right there in black and white in this footnote, which ends up being about a page and a half long, where they expressly say this was the product of an effort to undermine, to discredit candidate 1, donald trump, but we nevertheless believe is me t meritorious. so you have to assume to suggest perhaps you haven't read the documents. >> anterior you don't care what they say. >> and that's very disingenuous. >> but, ken, this is not how the
investigation started. it feels like we're arguing apples versus oranges. >> but there's a whole amen chorus that is arguing with donald trump and that's what's fueling this. it isn't just trump and his tweets, it's fox news, the daily caller website. it's the whole cod radre of journalists -- >> don't use that. they're not journalists if they're doing that. >> the facts don't comport with that at all and absolutely the investigation started because a russian agent approached george papadopoulos and said we have e-mails and incriminating information about hillary clinton. nothing to do with carter page. by the way, the fbi would have been derelict if they didn't look at carter page. he had already been the target of russian recruitment in a separate case. then he's an advisor for donald trump and then goes to russia and meets with russian officials. how could the fbi not investigate that, katy. >> so today because of all this drama, to distract from the
drama, who the hell knows, donald trump wants to revoke the security clearance for his political rivals. is there a way of looking at this that, hey, he's got a point. is there any generous reading for the president? >> not for the president. look, i think there is an argument to be made that there are a lot of former officials who use their clearances and parlay that in business careers and consulting work. that's fine, that's a fair argument to make. that list of people who do that is very long and it does not stop with the people who are critical of the president. so if rand paul wants to say that's his argument, that's fine, senator paul has said that. but for some reason the only people being threatened are critics of the president. that's a bad argument. >> zerlina. >> i just think the president takes every single critique personally. and what is distinct in their critiques of their president, some of it has been about national security and that's something we should all care about. we're sitting in a moment when
we have an indictment that lays out in great detail what happened in our election in 2016 and we're not doing anything to prevent that in 2018 even as administration officials right now like dan coats are ringing the bell and saying we need to be paying attention to this and taking this seriously. you have a president who's completely unable to do that because everything he is considering in terms of the russia attack and all of the facts he views through a prism of how it impacts him and any question about whether the russians impacted the outcome goes to whether or not he's legitimately elected. >> i don't know what you're talking. sarah huckabee sanders has says very dwefinitively that he can separate these. is it clear to you, noah? >> no. there was another effort to retroactively condition readers of donald trump's tweets to believe that the reference to the hoax that he tweeted out last night, this russia thing is a hoax, basically the entire russia assault on american interests in 2016 was a hoax.
the press secretary goes on television today and says he was clearly referring to the mueller probe, which is a hoax somehow. conte contextually that doesn't make sense. there's no agreed-upon set of facts. we're all looking at the same dossier and coming up with different talking points. it's extraordinarily frustrating and suggests that we can't have an honest conversation about this probe. >> so we can't decide that this is a banana right here, this cup? >> a banana or an apple. >> we cannot have a serious conversation and agree upon a set of facts because facts are not to be agreed upon, they are facts. >> that cup is a hoax. >> it's a witch hunt, it's a hoax. >> ken, one more thing on the security clearance is what makes this so interesting and seemingly blatantly a political act is that james comey doesn't have a security clearance any longer. andrew mccabe according to his
spokesperson doesn't have security clearance anymore. clapper says he hasn't used his clearance since he left power. michael hayden says it won't have any effect on what he says and what he writes. >> we shouldn't minimize this. this is a huge deal. this is nixonian. this is the president threatening to use his power essentially to punish his political enemies. nick makes a great point about former officials going out and trading on their clearances. you know who did that? mike flynn. he had a security clearance when he was standing up at the republican national convention and shouting "lock her up." look, former officials who lead intelligence agencies continue to hold their clearances so they can talk to their successors about very sensitive operations they may have a perspective on. there's a serious public policy reason for that. the idea that the president would get involved in trying to punish his enemy by revoking his clearances, first of all, it's never happened in american history according to experts
i've been talking to and it's really troubling to people who deal in security clearances and members of the intelligence community. >> i take all of those points and don't disagree with them at all, but how well thought out was this if james comey doesn't have a security clearance any longer or andrew mccabe doesn't have a security clearance any longer? >> yeah, that's a great point. nixon was at least competent when he tried to use the government to punish his enemies. this operation seems to be not very well founded from its beginning. >> it just makes it even clearer that it's a political move rather than a move to, i don't know, protect security clearances. who knows. ken dilanian. ken, great reporting as always. nick, zerlina and noah, stay with us. we never even made it to cohen's tapes. we'll get to that. ahead, the negative headlines just keep piling up for the white house, but president trump is still winning big, at least among republicans. at&t provides edge-to-edge intelligence, covering virtually every part of your healthcare business. so that if she has a heart problem & the staff needs to know, they will
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welcome back. negative stories this month have done nothing to -- they have done nothing to derail president trump's standing with members of the republican party. in fact, his level of support is at near historic levels. according to our new nbc news/"wall street journal" poll 88% of republicans approve of the job president trump is doing. the only president with a higher approval rating within their own party at this point in their presidency was president george w. bush, less than a year after 9/11. joining me now is charlie sykes, contributing editor at "the weekly standard" and msnbc contributor. our panel is back, nick, zerlina and noah. charlie, i want to get your take on this. republicans seem to have gotten
the signal that if the media is attacking donald trump, dig in their heels, don't worry, the poll numbers will go up. the same thing happened during the election. whenever the reporters or the media was criticizing donald trump for something that he did was inappropriate at the time, going after a gold star family, whatever, judge curiel, it felt like donald trump supporters would dig in their heels and his poll numbers would go up. >> yeah. that is the pattern. i mean you have tribalism, transactionism, anti-anti-trumpism, all of those things playing in. the harder he gets pushed, the more his supporters decide they have to stand by their man. and again, it is interesting. i would like to look at the numbers a little bit more closely, though, because his support among self-described independents, you know, is very, very soft. so you kind of wonder whether or not these numbers are perhaps slightly skewed by the number of people who go, okay, if this is
what the republican party stands for, then i'm out and, therefore, they don't self-identify. but there's no question about it that the base is sticking with him and that obviously explains why members of congress are also sticking with him and reluctant to take any strong action. >> it gives us an opportunity to replay this sound bite from the campaign, which is now officially two and a half years old today. listen to president trump. >> my people are so smart. and you know what else they say about my people, the polls? they say i have the most loyal people. did you ever see that? i could stand in the middle of fifth avenue and shoot somebody and i wouldn't lose any voters. it's like incredible. >> charlie, does that still ring true? >> yes, obviously it does. we're seeing this played out on a weekly basis. how many times have we had this conversation. is this the straw? will this be the turning point? will this finally break this
lock-step republican support for donald trump? and nothing does at this point. so the extraordinary thing is not that donald trump turned out to be who we thought he was, the extraordinary thing has been the degree to which conservatives and republicans have adjusted and adapted themselves and their standards and frankly their morality to donald trump. you know, whatever it is that we speculate, what will it take for them to break with donald trump, it's probably already happened. >> look at jeff flake. he comes out and criticizes the president. criticizes the president for that meeting with vladimir putin the other day. he's been one of the more outspoken people along with john mccain and others. when you ask jeff flake what is he going to do about it, hold up judicial nominations, as he did for tariffs, jeff flake says no. so what does that mean, nick? charlie, go ahead. >> i am fascinated by these mantras of impotence that we get from members of the united states senate. this is one of the most powerful
august bodies in the borworld legislative. the constitution endowed congress with incredible power, whether it is to legislate, to confirm, to consult, to hold hearings. all of those things. and yet you talk to members of congress right now and it's like, well, we can't do anything about it. we are completely powerless. whether or not it's about political courage or not, isn't this exactly why we had a system of checks and balances? isn't this exactly what james madison talked about in the federalist papers? being a united states senator or chairing a major committee like the foreign relations committee and deciding, yeah, you know what, i'm going to be a potted plant. i'm going to be a footnote in donald trump's march of folly. >> i think charlie is right but the bigger problem is that base, that trump core, they're dying. they're literally dying and figuratively dying. it is a shrinking number of americans. they are mostly older and white. they are being replaced by people that are younger and not white. eventually it's going to turn.
the question for republicans is has donald trump branded the party but also backed it into a political corner as a nativist and nationalist party forever. >> are you say confidently this is going to be a blip on the radar? >> it's not a blip at all. i'm just saying we talk a lot about trump's base, trump's base, which is a percentage of a certain number of people. i'm saying that number of people over time is going to get smaller and smaller, not bigger and bigger. >> from that perspective i have to say that this poll suggests not ole roses for democrats either. the most fascinating result in this survey was a very of whether or not candidates, both republican and democrat, are within the mainstream or out of sight of what americans are thinking generally. democrats today as opposed to two years ago collapsed. 33% say democratic candidates represent what most americans are thinking and 56%, a 14-point jump from this point in 2016 say that they are out of touch. that's not just republicans, that's democrats too.
democrats who identify as democrats say i'm not with these candidates. >> the vast ma noejority of the public is not obsessed with russia and obsessed with trump like the way certain precincts are. i saw a friend of mine was tweeting around the ideal platform for democrats. it does not mention russia. >> be careful what you say. i said that once and my twitter mentions went down the toilet for a month straight. >> what democrats have to worry about is trump is the most powerful and able brander in politics in years, maybe ever. and he has the megaphone. i think that he has some power to take their policies like abolish i.c.e. and put them out of the mainstream. >> i would say that democrats, certainly there are the contingent that are having the debate in the progressives base about abolishing i.c.e. on a day-to-day as we're seeing first-time candidates, women running in these districts, they're not talking about
i.c.e., they're talking about health care. i think that that's the winning issue for democrats and we've already seen that because they were able to stop the repeal of obamacare before the tax cut bill essentially gutted it anyway. and so i think as we head into the fall and as premiums start to go up for folks everywhere, i think democrats are going to both coalesce around holding obamacare together, but also they'll have real world premiums to show this is what republicans have done to your health care bill and this is what democrats will do to lower it. i would also add too, donald trump won 26% of eligible voters in 2016, so the idea that he has some sort of mandate when half the country did not vote at all and voter suppression efforts in states like wisconsin, michigan, absolutely impacted the outcome of the election, i can say that is a fact. >> can you confident it won't impact the election again? >> it absolutely could and
that's why democrats need to talk about voter suppression but in 2016 the message that we got was if you talk about voter suppression, that actually supresses the vote. i think that democrats actually need to rework that messaging in 2018 and 2020. >> charlie, a second ago you talked about the separation of powers and the checks and balances in government. why don't republicans -- if donald trump doesn't stand for a lot of what they stand for, tariffs, the positions on russia, et cetera, why don't they band together and form more of a, i don't know, a human wall against what they don't agree with with donald trump? why don't they use their collective power to push back? >> well, they ought to, but the answer is timidity. right now they're really content to have people like john mccain or jeff flake go out and say in public what they have been saying in private. but at this point they look at those polls and they go, look, as long as the base is with us, we are stuck with this guy. if we pass something, he's going to veto it.
but i think you can look back as a moment of real failure i think on the part of congress to be able to balance all this out. by the way, just some thoughts about the democrats. one of the lessons i think from 2016 is do not underestimate the democratic party's capacity for blowing an unlosable election. a lot of the things that you have been talking about, i think noah's point is dead on. if the democrats decide that they are going to move out of the mainstream and rely on anti-trump sentiment, i think they'll be making a huge mistake because one of the things that motivates trump's support is this notion of a binary support. at least he's not as bad as those leftists. they are very much, i think, willing to run against people they see out of the mainstream. i think that's a real danger for the democrats, not just in the midterm but in 2020 as well. >> to compound on that, my bigger fear is not that democrats will blow the election, but win despite their
movements to the left, the forgiveness of student debt and will win as a result of those claims. >> you're talking about a democratic socialist platform. i don't think alexandria ocasio-cortez represents that. >> they will enter congress with an equally polarized republican party and you will have two very far apart polls in a congress that cannot function. >> so does the freedom caucus represent all republicans? >> i would also say congress is pretty divided. i don't think they're very functional now. >> you saw what happened with a discharge petition and an effort to get a vote on an immigration measure that was centrist. it failed. 20 staunch conservative republicans didn't move. >> talking about a binary choice, charlie, i think you're right about that. that's why donald trump was able
to motivate people to vote for him, people that wouldn't normally approve of the way that he behaves, the way that he speaks. there's a great story in "the washington post" talking about evangelical support for the president about a church down south. it's really interesting and you might not agree with anything that's said in it, but it will give you some insight into what's going through the mind of certain trump voters. charlie sykes, thank you for joining us. panel, you're not going anywhere, you're not loose yet. ahead, president trump fires an all-caps threat towards iran, but could it be the beginning of north korea talks part 2?
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welcome back. today "the new york daily news" known for its eye-catching headlines and a lot of serious pulitzer prize-winning journalism has grim words about its future. the iconic 99-year-old paper is slashing its editorial staff in half. the parent company says it's reorganizing to build a stronger online readership, but new york city newsstands may never look the same and new york city politics may never be covered the same. we'll be right back after this. ♪
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to dangerous weather. hi, i'm allison bagley, a meteorologist with pg&e's community wildfire safety program. we're working now, to enhance our weather forecasting capabilities, building a network of new weather stations to identify when and where extreme wildfire conditions may occur, so we can respond faster and better. we're installing cutting edge technology to provide real-time mapping and tracking of weather patterns. and we use this information in partnership with first responders and california's emergency response systems. to learn more about the community wildfire safety program and how you can help keep your home and community safe, visit pge.com/wildfiresafety welcome back. president trump may be reluctant to confront vladimir putin, but he went ahead and sent a blistering all-caps tweet last
night threatening iranian president,
hassan rouhani. never ever threaten the united states again or you will suffer consequences, the likes of which few throughout history have ever suffered before. we are no longer a country that will stand for your demented words of violence and death. be cautious. it appears to be a response to rouhani warning that america should know that peace with iran is the mother of all peace and war with eiran is the mother of all wars. he also said do not play with the lion's tail because you will regret it eternally. the president's tweet is rising rhetoric against iran. it came after mike pompeo gave a blistering speech comparing iran's government to the mafia. i'm joined by richard haass, author of "a world in disaway."
richard, it is confusing to look at the way the president is treating russia and iran, both hostile nations. yet one he's say you'd be crazy to ask me to yell at him when he was standing next to vladimir putin. the other, he's basically yelling at him through twitter. >> well, you're right, katy. iran has become the adversary of choice. let's put aside russia, because obviously the president has this inexplicable devotion to a positive relationship. it's interesting to look at the difference, say, with north korea. the summit accomplished in singapore accomplished from what i can tell virtually nothing, yet north korea is off the front pages. they have nuclear weapons and the president is basically saying be patient. iran does not have nuclear weapons. it was the united states, not iran that blew up the nuclear agreement. and now the president is acting in a remarkably confrontational
manner. you've got to think that it has something to do with our allies in the region, israel, saudi arabia, all favor a tough confrontational approach with iran. unlike north korea, iran is on its own. it doesn't have a great power patron like china or russia. so iran is more exposed, so you have the support of allies in the region to push it. you have a powerful group of people in the united states across the board politically who are anti-iran, and iran is in some ways on its own. >> why now? why late last night? and i ask this because you've got to bring in donald trump's old tweets into the conversation because it helps you understand where the man -- where his head might be. he's got a number of old tweets from 2011, 2012, basically saying that barack obama is going to start a war with iran in order to get re-elected. he says it in 2011, in order to get elected, barack obama will
start a war with iran. is it fair to point back or look back at these tweets and wonder if maybe there's something more to him getting angry with iran last night suddenly late at night? >> katy, you're not going to ask me to explain why this president does what he does, particularly at 11:30 on a sunday night. >> 11:30 on a sunday night when he's facing a lot of criticism about the way that he handled the putin summit, when he's facing criticism about not being on the side of our intelligence community, when it's been a pretty terrible week? i don't know, richard. >> there's a couple of things out there so there is a case for some distraction. on the other hand, he has also been quite consistent with his criticism of iran. he called the nuclear pact the worst agreement ever negotiated. as you pointed out in your intro, the secretary of state gave a very tough speech on iran essentially calling for such fundamental political change, it's almost tantamount to regime change and suddenly iran is being singled out for its lack
of democracy and lack of human rates. unless i missed it, russia, china, turkey, north korea, the philippines and others have escaped such criticism. clearly the administration has decided for whatever political or geo political set of reaches that iran is its favorite adversary. >> so what is the goal here? could he be trying to foment more unrest? there's protests going on right now, the economy is in the tank, it's going down even further since the president announced he would pull out of the iran deal and reimpose sanctions. >> the short answer is, yes, i think the administration has a policy of destabilization. again, you look at the secretary of state's speech, which was brutal in its denunciation of iranian leadership, associating them with corruption and in a very detailed way essentially siding with various opposition elements. the administration doesn't have a way of fighting back against
iran in syria, doesn't have a very effective way of fighting against iran in lebanon or in yemen, so this seems to be iran's achilles heel. as you say, a very weak economy, the currency is plummeting, inflation is going up, growth is going down. so you've got a weak economy and real political protests. you've got iranians going into the streets saying stop spending so much on guns, start spending more on the quality of life here at home. so i think the administration sees a weakness and they're trying to exploit it. >> how much could this have to do with how frustrated the president is reported to be when it comes to north korea and how north korea has not been keeping up their end of the bargain and nothing has come out of it? >> well, he should be frustrated over north korea, but he should be more frustrated with his own policy towards north korea. he set out an impossible goal or up realistic goal of denuclearization. claimed he accomplished it when in fact he had not. every day that goes by shows the
gap between the administration's rhetoric and the reality. so he's frustrated with north korea. he's on the defensive with russia. he's launched a trade war, which i think threatens a lot of the gains that had been made in the markets. so there's iran. and again, almost by a process of elimination, you get the sense that the administration has decided this is their best chance to do something big in foreign policy. >> do they want to negotiate with iran? is that even a desire? >> i don't think so, because i can't imagine that an iranian leadership that for decades has called the united states the great satan is going to accomplish -- is going to agree to negotiate. i think the gap between the two sides is so fundamental, i'm not sure what the negotiation would be about. so no, i don't think this is a bid to negotiate. i don't think this is another north korea. i think this is an attempt to put real pressure on iran so either iran says uncle and agrees to all sorts of things in a new nuclear agreement they
weren't prepared to agree to before, but failing that, i think this is an attempt to destabilize the government. >> richard haass, thanks for trying to make sense of it with us. we appreciate it. >> thank you, katy. ahead, what are the chances the democrats with flip the house this november? we've just released new nbc news/"wall street journal" polling, next. copd makes it hard to breathe. so to breathe better, i go with anoro. ♪ go your own way copd tries to say, "go this way."
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welcome back. tonight in "meet the midterms" some numbers from our news nbc news/"wall street journal" poll tell us where the fight for the house stands three and a half months out from election day. democrats hold a six-point advantage over republicans on the generic congressional ballot. that is down from the ten-point lead they had over republicans in june. but don't call the blue wave alert off just yet. democrats are maintaining big advantage in voter enthusiasm. 65% of democrats have a high level of interest in this november's midterm election compared to 49% of republicans. that is a 16-point margin between the two parties and it is the same as it was in june. now, a lot can happen over the next three and a half months domestically, internationally and with the special counsel investigation. but at the moment democrats have enthusiasm on their side. having enthusiasm on your side is a whole lot better than having it on the other side. we'll be back with the panel in
just a moment right after the break. -we're in a small room. what?! -welcome. -[ gasps ] a bigger room?! -how many of you use car insurance? -oh. -well, what if i showed you this? -[ laughing ] ho-ho-ho! -wow. -it's a computer. -we compare rates to help you get the price and coverage that's right for you. -that's amazing! the only thing that would make this better is if my mom were here. what?! an unexpected ending!
time now for "the lid." the panel is back. lid." the panel is back. paul manafort was in court today, not in one of his thousand dollar, $10,000 suit but a green prison suit, which was unusual for paul manafort since we've seen him go in and out in the fancy suits. the judge has delayed the trial one extra week. paul manafort going to trial, first one in the russia probe to go to trial. do you have any idea why paul manafort is going to trial and not cut a plea deal as everyone else has so far? >> no, i have no idea. doesn't seem like he has much of a case. apparently the evidence was strong enough to suggest he needed to be in prison, a risk being out on bond. i suspect and i think others would suspect as well perhaps he
is angling for some sort of exoneration from the president in the event he is convicted on the many charges he faces. there's no other reason i think he would go to trial because it doesn't look like he's got very much of case. there's a lot of speculation on the part of trump's critics that would be a significant offense to the point it would shake republicans loose. i'm not convinced, he would issue a pardon and we are used to the pardons to the point it would be a two-day news cycle and we'd forget about it. >> if manafort is going to trial, what is cohen doing? michael cohen has tapes. >> he's definitely signaling, having breakfast with al sharpton and tweeting it out. definitely sending a signal to president trump through the television saying, please please please, either pay my legal bills as we were discussing during the break or pardon like manafort might be angling for. i do think none of that will
necessarily matter, in the sense if he pardons one person he has to pardon a lot of people, because there are a lot of people caught up in the legal tentacles of this case. the legal pardon, i think that was the goal of the pardons we've seen in this last few months to normalize it so he could pardon other people so he would have that option. i don't know it's a realistic option given the number of people caught up in the tentacles of the legal probe. the special master is allowing 12 of the audiotapes cohen has recorded to be turned over to prosecutors. the only one we know has the president was the one we reported on last week having to do with karen mcdougle, playbook playmate said she had an affair with the president the president denies. the playboy playmate.
we should also point out michael cohen has not yet been charged with anything. >> that's correct. if you're a fixer, the guy who says he would take a bullet for you, pay people off, your best buddy is also taping you in your conversations, it suggesting the relationship you thought you had or presented to world you had is not the actual relationship. these guys were sharks, collecting evidence on each other. they're going to war. i say popcorn for the viewers back home. >> what does that suggest michael cohen thinks of donald trump? >> he can't be trusted to have his back in the end. that was a cya moment in terms of i'm recording this conversation because later i might need it. that's alarming in the sense of the attorney-client relationship certainly recording your client is a rather unusual circumstance. i think in this case you have the president and his team out with all of these denials, hearing him on tape talking
about something he already publicly denied would be something perhaps might break some of the partisanship we're seeing. we have not yet seen -- >> you think so? >> no, i don't know. i'm speculating in the sense it would be different in that it would be a tape of the president and his voice -- >> republicans have been burned by tapes in the past, "access hollywood" and then he moved on, oh, gosh, what do i know? >> i wouldn't say that. anybody that saw that tape and went out and supported the president, i'm questioning their judgment in terms of the "access hollywood" tape. this is a different tape, him on tape talking about having an affair with a playboy playmate when he denied it. >> ironic we have so many tapes. >> the "access hollywood" tape was not evidence of a crime. i mean, against people perhaps but not against the law. what could -- i'm just saying -- >> it's him bragging about
sexual assault -- >> it's not him committing a crime. >> to be clear. >> what could be on this tape, if he is attesting to the political import why she had to be paid off it could go to the campaign finance case against him. >> of everything that's happening -- >> being optimistic. thank you for a spirited monday, guys. appreciate it. ahead, weapons of mass production. alright guys let's go! let's do this.
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in case you missed it, this right here is the lib beret tore. it looks like a toy gun, liberator, nothing to worry about, right? right? the liberator is a 3-d printable pistol. in just a matter of days you'll be able to download one off the internet and make it at home if you have the right printer. the gun rights group distributed reached a settlement with the government that was on diy firearms, a digital file that pinned the second amendment against the first. the settlement takes effect august 1st when the defense distributed the age of the downloadable gun begins and
expected to post a file to 3-d print a semi-automatic rifle. getting a gun in this country is not very difficult but about to get a lot easier especially as 3-d printing technology becomes more widespread. we now know the what and when about the future of guns. now, what does this mean for the future of gun control? that will do it for me with more of mtp daily, "the beat" starts right now. two trump former aides tonight, former lawyer, larry cohen, tapes found in his office hand over to the feds and paul manafort handed over to trial on wednesday and just got a one week delay. and buzz on news he secretly taped donald trump. tonight, the news is that tape didn't exist alone